By Editor In Chief/Lord Of Words Ed M Morris
Soon NFL teams will be reporting to training camp (Go Giants) and it will be time to fire up the grill and get the tailgate party started. Here at Templars HQ East, we love to tailgate and want to share some of the items that we always have when we BBQ:
- Extra fuel – No matter what you are using as a heat source, have more, even if you leave for the tailgate topped off. An extra propane tank or that extra bag of charcoal is a game saver when you run out or a friend needs some for their grill. Besides, what if you wanted to run your back up grill to cook more? You do have a back up grill don't you? The Webber Smokey Joe is my go to back up.
- If you are using charcoal, consider getting a Charcoal Starter, this will get those little pucks of heat nice and hot and ready to go faster than just spreading them down on the bottom of the grill and lighting them. This one by Webber is the best and most durable of all the ones I have used over the years. Yes, I like Webber products. A lot.
- Utensils – Spatulas, Turning Forks, Large Spoons. Get at least two of each, in case they break or you are working with multiple foods and/or grills that need their own utensil. Around the winter holidays, you can find BBQ gift sets that will fill this need and rather cheaply too. Really cheap? Wait until after the holidays and get them on clearance.
- Cooking Thermometer – If you are doing steaks, then you will definitely need one of these. They are inexpensive now and the battery in them can last for years. Want one for cheap, see number 3 above.
- Apron – Keep a few of these on hand, in case that friend/brother-in-law/new guy wants to help out. Plain, a team logo, your name, just make it yours. My wife gave me a tactical BBQ apron because I was in the Army. It's cute. It even has a holder for my beer.
- Sturdy Paper Plates & plastic forks, knives and spoons– What brand should you use? That is up to you and your budget. There are reusable forks, knives, and spoons designed to be dishwasher safe and will last you years. Paper plates are great for serving food on and make a nice flexible funnel in a pinch.
- Serving Trays – You cooked all that good looking food, make sure you have something to put it on! Large plastic or metal trays are excellent for this. If you have a few old cookie sheets at home that are not good for baking on, repurpose them and give them a new life at a tailgate.
- Plastic zip top bags and plastic containers – Both can be used for food storage before the game and for left overs after the game. Shame to see left overs go in the parking lot bins when you can reheat and eat them during the week, or to be more direct, for Monday and Thursday night games!
- A Chair – If you bring only one chair to the tailgate, it is for the master of the BBQ. He/She is the one cooking for everyone, so they get the comfy camp style chair. Everone else can use a cooler (you did bring a cooler right?) or the bumper of their car if they forgot to bring a chair for themselves.
- Food Covers – for the warmer months, these covers are great for keeping the bugs out of cooked food and food ready to hit the grill top. Get a bunch, they usually fold up flat or close like an umbrella and do not take up much space.
- Beer - What beer should you bring? That is wholly up to you. I usually favor a Shiner beer for tailgating. No, they aren't paying me to write that. I just like them for when I am outside and cooking. Remember to check to see if the game/event you are attending allows alcohol so you can avoid any issues or fines.
That's it, enjoy and grill safely. May your team do well in the upcoming season, except for the Cowboys. And The Eagles. And The Redskins.